Michigan Airshow crash: Chris Darnell, killed at Battle Creek Field Airshow and Balloon Festival, police say

BATTLE CREEK, Mich. – One person has died after a crash during the “fireworks section” of an air show in Michigan, police said.

The incident happened Saturday shortly after 1 p.m. at the Battle Creek Field of Flight Balloon Festival, held at Battle Creek Operations Airport.

Chris Darnell, 40, died while driving a racing truck dubbed the Shockwave Jet Truck during the air show, police said in an update Saturday night. The accident is under investigation.

Dramatic video by air show attendees shows the truck racing two planes on the runway before the crash. A small fire in the back of the truck could be seen as the vehicle slid over a large fireball and crashed, ABC News reported.

“Oh boy, we had an incident here with our Shockwave here at the Airshow Center,” the announcer could be heard after the crash.

Police said the Battle Creek Fire Department, the Battle Creek Police Department and the Federal Aviation Administration responded to the scene.

Police have not released any further information during the investigation.

The remainder of Saturday’s air show was canceled “because of the incident that occurred,” Battle Creek Field of Flight said in a statement. Saturday night activities were scheduled to continue at the festival, which runs through Monday.

The Shockwave, a custom built racing truck, is owned by Darnell Racing Enterprises, based in Springfield, Missouri. ABC News has reached out to the company for comment.

According to its owner, the truck is powered by three flame-throwing jet engines capable of traveling at more than 350 mph. It regularly appears at air shows and drag racing exhibitions across the country.

Darnell has been involved in motorsport “all his life”, according to his profile on Darnell Racing’s website, and works with his father in the business.

Copyright © 2022 ABC News Internet Ventures.

https://6abc.com/battle-creek-field-of-flight-air-show-accident-michigan-2022/12012545/ Michigan Airshow crash: Chris Darnell, killed at Battle Creek Field Airshow and Balloon Festival, police say

Mike Fahey

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